United Way campaign still needs donations

The Brown County United Way campaign topped the halfway point last week in its goal for 2017, and donations are still needed to ensure success.

“The Underwood’s luncheon kicked off the campaign in a big way with $5,000, and several important contributions have been received,” Karen Lynch, executive director of the county’s United Way, said. “But we’re standing at 51 percent, so we’ll need that much again to reach the goal.”

That target is $250,000, which will be allocated to 14 different local agencies during the coming year. Failure to meet the goal could mean the anticipated allocations to agencies will have to be scaled back.

“You look at the list of agencies supported by the United Way, and you realize that someone you know is touched by at least one of them,” Dr. Bill Ellis, president of Howard Payne University, said. He and his wife, Dr. Diana Ellis, are serving as campaign co-chairs.

“People who are vulnerable are touched by the agencies on that list,” Ellis continued, “whether they suffer from an illness like cancer, face domestic abuse, live in a lower economic situation, or have children in their families.”

Ellis said anyone who cares about the people of Brownwood and Brown County should want to support the United Way campaign.

“We have our churches, and that’s one place where we can show how we care about others in different situations,” Ellis said. “The United Way is how we can reach many others right here at home. There’s the slogan, ‘Think Local, Live Local,’ and that is exactly what is emphasized and represented in this campaign.”

Ellis said he and Diana have been longtime supporters of the United Way, and they didn’t hesitate to serve as the campaign’s co-chairs when they were asked.

“We saw that as our responsibility,” he said. “There would be no way you could support all these important agencies in our community if you tried to do it individually. That’s why the United Way is so important.”

Lynch said some of the larger contributions to the Brown County United Way so far this include the $5,000 from the kickoff at Underwood’s, $4,000 from the Central Texas Foundation, $4,300 from City of Brownwood employees, $36,013 corporate gift from 3M, $18,500 corporate gift from Kohler corporate, $4,000 from Brownwood Regional Medical Center for a gift basket raffle/silent auction, $5,687 from Kroger employees, $3,355 from United Supermarket’s Jackie Pierce Golf Classic, $4,060 from United Supermarket employees, and $12,850 from Atmos Energy which is half from employees and half from the corporate office.

The Brown County United Way supports 14 agencies that benefit the people of Brown County: the American Red Cross, The Ark Domestic Violence Shelter, Brown County 4-H, Brown County Association for Retarded Citizens, Brown County Home Solutions, Brownwood Community Resource Council for the benefit of TJJD youth, Boys and Girls Club of Brown County, Early Childhood Invention, Cancer Services Network, CASA, Family Services Center, Girl Scouts of Central Texas, Pearl Griffin Memorial Latch Key Program, and The Salvation Army.